May 13, 2012

Saying ‘Bon appétit!’ in Beijing

One of the top entrees at Maison Boulud consists of thick cuts of well-seasoned seared lamb chops with ratatouille minted basil pesto. (Photo copyright owned by this blogger.)

I was in Beijing and I had been eating Chinese food for days. But it was getting to be a bore.

Don’t get me wrong. I found Beijing cuisine surprisingly superb, even if I did order from restaurant menus blindly. This involved a large amount of wild gesticulating and pointing on menus with photos over Chinese script, while I exchanged short simple words with the food attendants who said “yes” to everything, even if my question didn’t call for such a response. “So what’s in this dish?” “Yes.” (Uh-oh. Toto, we’re not in Kansas anymore!)

But it was the fourth day of my stay and I seriously needed something different to appease my restless tastebuds.

Not sure if I would ever pass this way again, I grabbed the opportunity to dine in Chef Daniel Boulud’s first China outlet, the Maison Boulud a Pekin. (Click for the rest of the piece and a slideshow. Originally published on May 1, 2012.)

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